XXXV MEETING OF HIGH AUTHORITIES ON HUMAN RIGHTS OF MERCOSUR (RAADH)
Niñ@sur Permanent Commission Meeting
May 28, 2020
Within the framework of the Meeting of High Authorities on Human Rights of Mercosur, with the Permanent Commission of Niñ@Sur, which is taking place in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic that has paralyzed the world, affecting the lives of millions of women and men, regardless of age, nationality or social condition, aggravated in our Latin American region by social and economic inequality and violence, we hereby declare as follows
1. We highlight the actions taken by States to address the pandemic
In this context, we wish to highlight the actions that our States have taken to try to flatten the curve of the pandemic, with the measures suggested by international organizations, strengthening health systems, particularly
2. In the pandemic, children and adolescents have been left invisible.
The lives of children and adolescents, under these measures, have been significantly affected by social isolation, with the disruption of their interaction with their peers and the possibility of increased violence in the home. They were affected in their right to education and health, and were left behind, as part of the measures initially taken. Children have been invisible in the responses, generating multiple violations of their rights and aggravating the inequity suffered by the population in our region. Despite these efforts, the SIPPINNASS have not succeeded in protecting the most vulnerable children and adolescents.
3. The pandemic has exposed the weakness of SIPPINNAS.
Over the years and in accordance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child, our States have made a significant effort to develop National Integral Protection Systems (SIPPINNAS). They have created legal and institutional frameworks in line with international standards. We are concerned that these bodies have not been duly involved in this intervention, unfortunately losing the necessary comprehensiveness to guarantee the rights of children. This has been observed in the interruption or low level of functioning of integral protection services at the local level or the suspension of the system’s inter-institutional articulation and coordination spaces at the three levels of government.
It is essential to guarantee the functioning of a minimum system of care for children and adolescents in need of support during the pandemic (protection, care, prevention and participation).
Our children and adolescents deserve and need activated SIPPINNAS, with renewed capacity to respond to this pandemic.
4. Children as key actors in SIPPINNASS.
We value and congratulate the States for the promotion of the participation of children and adolescents, promoting Redsurca, which We hope it can serve as an example for all SIPPINNASSes in the region so that girls and boys can participate as agents of change and to encourage the active incorporation of children and adolescents in the decision-making spaces of the Sippinnas in each of the member countries. In these times we face great challenges as humanity, which require that we address them by bringing together all voices to build comprehensive responses, therefore, children, as subjects of rights, must be part of this effort.
5. The Sippinnas Forums, spaces for the promotion and strengthening of an institutional framework with a rights-based approach.
We request the Government of Paraguay to ensure the continuity of the SIPPINNAS Forums, a valuable space to continue building the institutional framework required for the fulfillment of children’s rights. We hope it will be a participatory process and as civil society we offer our support to make it happen.
From civil society organizations in Latin America and the Caribbean, we remind the States of their commitment to guarantee all rights to all children every day, which, despite the obvious difficulties of the context, cannot be neglected.
Invoking the Pronouncement of the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the IACHR Resolution on The Pandemic and Human Rights in Latin America and the Call of United Nations experts to mitigate the risks of violence, food insecurity, lack of education for girls and boys we call on the States of Latin America and the Caribbean to:
Adopt all necessary and effective measures to strengthen the National Systems for the Comprehensive Protection of Children and Adolescents. for an adequate attention to children and adolescents that includes, among other measures, institutional, technical, financial and operational strengthening to guarantee, from a rights and gender perspective, the development of actions for prevention and response to victims. Establishing a comprehensive response that includes strategies to ensure that the measures established for the pandemic are coordinated, complementary and universal. The prevention and protection of children and adolescents at the municipal level must be considered essential services that cannot be suspended for the duration of the quarantine.
Children’s rights are not quarantined!
 a) PAHO Technical Documents – Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19); b) Committee on the Rights of the Child – Pronouncement COVID-19; c) Inter-American Commission on Human Rights – Resolution 01/2020: Pandemic and Human Rights in the Americas; d) Partnership for Child and Adolescent Protection in Humanitarian Action – Technical Note: Child and Adolescent Protection during the Coronavirus Pandemic; e) United Nations – Policy Brief: The Impact of COVID-19 on children / Agenda for Action; f) Inter-American Commission on Human Rights – Press Release: IACHR warns about the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on children and adolescents; g) Inter-American Commission of Women – COVID-19 in the lives of women: reasons to recognize the differentiated impacts.
Save the children
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